Jump to content

How hard should a cache be to find?


arrowroot
Followers 0

Recommended Posts

Given that they're not supposed to be underground, require special tools to detect, etc... how hard should it be to find a cache that isn't in extremely difficult terrain?

 

I'm asking because two people found my cache in the first 24 hours after approval, I'm wondering if I should be disappointed that it was too easy.

 

I guess, what's the goal here? Sharing a pretty spot in the woods? Providing a challenging puzzle? Trinket exchange (cache trash, my wife calls it)?

 

How often do you camo so well that people pass it right by? I know I haven't had one I haven't been able to find, but a few of them were pretty tough, and one micro I nearly gave up on.

 

Joel

 

I am Arrowroot, son of Arrowshirt. I have many names, you know

Link to comment

It doesn't have to be hard. It's more of the adventure getting there or just the fact it's a way to get out of the house and have a little fun.

 

I don't think people like "needle in a haystack" type of difficulty, but appreciate a clever hide.

 

Really, after reading some of the old posts, it really doesn't have to be hidden at all, just obscured from a muggle's view.

 

CR

 

72057_2000.gif

Link to comment

is different for each cache. Some are to show off a specific location for whatever reason. Others are intended to be challenging puzzles or just challenging to locate (find - not talking terrain here). That is up to the person who is hiding the cache. So what was your goal? Did you succeed? What will you do different next time? Point being, if you want to accomplish something specific with your cache(s) you must plan accordingly. Plan being the operative word here...

 

Oh, for the record...I like the needle in the haystack kind, and so do many of the frequent cachers I know. So if its too easy I would like the surroundings to be worth the (usually road) trip.

Link to comment

The goal for a successful hiding spot, as I see it, is to match the difficulty rating shown for the cache (as opposed to the terrain rating). If I hike to the cache site, be it a 200 yard stroll or a 5-mile hike up and down hills, I expect a "1" difficulty cache to be practically in plain sight, and a "4" difficulty cache to be devilishly hidden, a multicache, a puzzle, etc.

 

If you tell people that your cache has a 1.5 difficutly rating, and they report they found it after a brief search, you've succeeded. If you hide a 4-part multicache and someone writes a log saying it took 2 hours to complete and they enjoyed the challenge, that's a success too. What I do NOT like are 1/1 caches that take an hour to locate after climbing up and down hills, or 3/3 caches that turn out to be simple strolls along well-defined trails, ending with a quick find in a hollow log.

 

Each type of experience is enjoyable for different reasons and by different types of geocachers. There is no "correct" answer.

 

x-x-x-x-x-x-x-x-x-x-x-x-x-x-x-x-x-x-x-x-x-x-x-x

If there's no accounting for stupidity, then why do I need to file a tax return?

Link to comment

Nooo! Don't listen to The Commissar! icon_razz.gif You'll have far too many NFs in your logs! icon_wink.gif I've only done 2 of his and one of which was devious. Look how many NFs are in his logs.

 

When I say "needle in a haystack" I mean have to turn over every rock in the quarry type of hunt.

 

The Commissar's hides were clever, the kind I like. icon_biggrin.gif

 

Commissar, don't think we've been avoiding the rest of your caches. We just haven't gotten around to them yet. Soon, very soon. icon_cool.gif

 

CR

 

icon_biggrin.gif ~CR

Link to comment

quote:
Originally posted by Sissy-n-CR:

 

I don't think people like "needle in a haystack" type of difficulty, but appreciate a clever hide.


 

Some of us do. Many in our area do to. But the difficulty should be labeled correctly. What I consider "needle in a haystack" would be a fake rock in a field of rocks. Or something similar.

 

george

 

39570_500.jpg

Pedal until your legs cramp up and then pedal some more.

Link to comment

Maybe this will help

 

*Easy. In plain sight or can be found in a few minutes of searching.

 

**Average. The average cache hunter would be able to find this in less than 30 minutes of hunting.

 

***Challenging. An experienced cache hunter will find this challenging, and it could take up a good portion of an afternoon.

 

****Difficult. A real challenge for the experienced cache hunter - may require special skills or knowledge, or in-depth preparation to find. May require multiple

days / trips to complete.

 

*****Extreme. A serious mental or physical challenge. Requires specialized knowledge, skills, or equipment to find cache.

 

====================================

As always, the above statements are just MHO.

====================================

Link to comment

quote:
Originally posted by georgeandmary:

quote:
Originally posted by Sissy-n-CR:

 

I don't think people like "needle in a haystack" type of difficulty, but appreciate a clever hide.


 

Some of us do. Many in our area do to. But the difficulty should be labeled correctly. What I consider "needle in a haystack" would be a fake rock in a field of rocks. Or something similar.

 

george

 

http://img.Groundspeak.com/user/39570_500.jpg

Pedal until your legs cramp up and then pedal some more.


 

I stand corrected. icon_smile_blush.gif

 

CR

 

72057_2000.gif

Link to comment

quote:
Originally posted by Sissy-n-CR:

It doesn't have to be hard. It's more of the adventure getting there or just the fact it's a way to get out of the house and have a little fun.

 

I don't think people like "needle in a haystack" type of difficulty, but appreciate a clever hide.


 

I have a "needle in a hystack" cache: Fustis

 

Yes, it frustrates cachers. On the other hand, the description does warn them and, once it is found, the find gives a thrill of accomplishment not gained from an easy dash-and-cache. The logs bear this out.

 

I think it's more fun to devise a challenging hide than an easy one. Other cachers prefer easy hides. It takes all kinds to feed the geocaching need.

 

--

wcgreen

Wendy Chatley Green

Link to comment

I agree with the others, make it as easy or difficult as you like, just make sure it's rated properly....now for that 5/1 I wanna place, where can I find a fake rock to hide at a quarry about 15 feet from a parking lot?

 

I'm lost. I've gone to find myself. If I should happen to get back before I return, please ask me to wait.

Link to comment

quote:
Originally posted by arrowroot:

I'm asking because two people found my cache in the first 24 hours after approval, I'm wondering if I should be disappointed that it was too easy.


icon_biggrin.gif I know what you mean to find in day or even hours after approved. By George! was orginally members only but after month I removed that option. Got many emails asking for help to solve. Caused many brainers malfunction. Even Yee Inet was a brainer. Had to watch a 1964 movie to get answers icon_biggrin.gif
Link to comment

Yeah, well, it's obvious some people like the NIAH type cache.

 

One word of caution, think about the aftereffects of someone who looks for that type of cache. If they have to tear up the forest in a 50' radius...

 

I've read plenty of descriptions of cache sites where people have turned over every log and rock looking the cache.

 

If it can be done where the hunter can leave no clue that he's been there, then go for it.

 

CR

 

72057_2000.gif

Link to comment

quote:
Very good Harrald, I like your ratings and plan to use them when I start placing caches!

 

Harralds ratings come directly from the "hide a cache" page. If more people stuck to these ratings, there would be far less confusion. For instance people always refer to 1/1 caches. By definition a 1/1 should be in plain sight (or the location is obvious) and the walk to it should be on a short, handicap accessable, paved path. 90 percent of the 1/1's I've found do not fit these criteria. Heck, I've walked over rocky trails and spent an hour looking for supposed 1/1 caches. I've also found caches with 3.5 terrain rating that were no more than a short walk on a flat, well defined path and caches with a 2 difficulty that I found in seconds.

 

How hard should a cache be to find? That's up to the hider. Personally, in the forest, I try to make the cache fairly easy to find, so people don't tear up the surrounding area while searching. Urban caches can (and should, to prevent looting) be made a lot harder.

"Paternalism is the greatist despotism" - Emmanual Kant

Link to comment

Out here in the upper left hand corner of the country, there are some cachers that think the harder the better. We've got a 'committed' group that really enjoy the impossible to solve puzzle caches.

 

One that's been archived or I'd post the link was fractal's Contact cache. At a get together we heard stories of people's attempts to solve this. It was amazing what they had to go through, but they enjoyed it all that much more for having done the extra work.

 

smile02.gif If ignorance is bliss, why aren't there more happy people??

 

icon_geocachingwa.gif

Link to comment

I still say, do whatever difficulty you want, but also agree that it must be correctly rated. That way people know what they are getting into.

 

I have started giving my opinion of how each cache I find should be rated in my posts and use the same standards noted above. If you use the "progrem" to rate the cache and use the answer it spits out you will more often than not be rating your caches too high IMHO.

 

Now that NITH has been defined lets just say The Commissar likes them tough and leave it at that...It gets boaring to do drive-bys that are rated too high.

Link to comment

Personally I like to hide caches so they can be found without turning all the rocks over, or moving logs or in any way disturbing the area. Sure that makes it more difficult to find a good hiding spot but it is better to leave the area undisturbed.

Remember the GPS is only so accurate, and worse when tree cover is involved. If the person hiding it only has a 40 foot accuracy and the person seeking it only has a 40 foot also then the cache could be 80 to 100 feet from where you are looking.

 

And everyone knows 40 foot is not too bad in a dense wooded area. I have had it no closer then 100 feet unless I went to a clear opening.

In conditions like that then the Needle is in a huge Haystack. And the next person seeking the cache may find the area with every stone overturned, all logs rolled over, all grass stomped flat, ect. Is that the proper way to leave an area we hid a cache? I think not.

Link to comment

I think the important thing is that for every part of the world, there should be a reasonable mix of hard caches, easy caches, multi-caches and puzzle caches. So long as they are well-labelled on the web site, I don't think it matters how ridiculously easy or insanely hard a cache is.

 

It's a bit frustrating taking the kids out in early evening to find a supposedly easy cache and discover it's a nightmare to find...but it's just as bad to drive for half a day to a supposedly challenging cache - only to find it after 30 seconds of stepping from the car.

 

I'm a novice - but the spread of difficulty for a two star cache seems pretty wide.

 

Perhaps instead of a "star rating" that's rather subjective, we could have people enter the actual amount of time it took to find the cache. Giving an "average time to find" indicator would be much more useful than a vague and subjective star rating.

Link to comment

quote:
Originally posted by arrowroot:

I'm asking because two people found my cache in the first 24 hours after approval, I'm wondering if I should be disappointed that it was too easy.


 

I was one of the two finders. It was well hidden and I had to search for quite a while.

 

The other guy who found it tries to be first finder to all new caches in the area, so that's why it was found as fast as it was. When I saw the cache first appear, I was on my way to search for it in under two hours, just to beat the other guy to the find.

 

Too bad I ran out of candlepower and had to return the next day to finish what I started. It was a nice cache and well hidden, so I wouldn't worry about it too much. It wasn't found because it was easy. I'm sure it was found because neither of us gave up easily.

Link to comment

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.
Note: Your post will require moderator approval before it will be visible.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Loading...
Followers 0
×
×
  • Create New...